A man and a woman have been charged with the murder of 80-year-old pensioner Cynthia Beamond, whose body was found hidden at her house in Howley Grange, Halesowen on Sunday.

Leo Barnes, 32, from Runcorn Road, Balsall Heath, and Chantelle Moran-Stokes, 24, from Latches Close, Darlaston, were charged last night and are due to appear at Dudley Magistrates Court later today.

A post mortem examination revealed Beamond died after sustaining serious head injuries during a violent attack.

Barnes has also been charged with the murder of Philip Silverstone, 67, whose body was found in Spencer House in London's Belsize Park area on Monday morning.

A West Midlands Police spokesman said: "We are working with the Metropolitan Police Service on this joint investigation and both forces have continued to update the families of Mrs Beamond and Mr Silverstone throughout."